In the face of the recently announced feed-in tariff review, Sharp has called on the UK Government not to negate the early success of the FiT. This move is supported by the Shadow energy minister Huw Irranca-Davies, MP.
Following the recently announced 300 new jobs at its production facility in Wrexham and the opening of a training academy to help build an infrastructure of trained professionals to expand the existing skills base in the UK, Sharp is now urging the Government to consider its decision to review the FiT for installations over 50kW.
International sales manager, Sharp, Andrew Lee said, “The extra jobs created at our factory are safe but the damage is being done to the wider UK economy. It won't be existing jobs that will go, but jobs that were planned to be created that won't happen.”
“We understand the concern and the financial pressures the Government is currently under, but there has to be a figure that is better for UK plc. The industry is prepared to work with the Government to find an appropriate level at which to cap the tariff but, setting this at 50Kw doesn't even allow for installations in large commercial buildings, schools and social housing project, which will cut the industry off at its knees.”
To date, the feed-in tariff has promoted over 20,000 solar PV installations in the UK. This growth in consumer interest means that the solar panel installation market in the UK is expected to be worth £500 million a year by 2015, provided the tariff is left uncut.
Shadow energy minister Huw Irranca-Davies MP said, “Chris Huhne's rash decision to bring forward the review of FITs has sent shockwaves through the solar and micro-generation sectors, jeopardising vital green jobs at a time when any jobs are at a premium. But he also casts doubt on the commitment of the government to renewable energy. I urge Chris Huhne and the government to think hard before throwing away the early success of the feed-in tariff, and not give in to pressure from the Treasury.”
Using ecobuild 2011 as a platform, Sharp and Huw will present their feelings towards the threatened cut at a photo-call on the Sharp stand (North Hall N2210) at 1:30pm on Thursday, March 3rd.